Monday, April 27, 2009

Bring it On -

So far the experiences we have been welcoming have been more excrutiating than ecstatic but we are still hopeful. Day One from St. Jean Pied de Port to Orisson was a major climb and all in the rain.
¨What a stupid I am¨! Dayton was reminded of this fractured phrase from a press conference comment by Argentinian golfer, Roberto de Vicenzo, who when he won the Masters only to lose it for signing an incorrect scorecard. "What a stupid I am" was how he described himself for adding in an extra stroke on one hole. The memory of this comment came as we were all berating ourselves for having too much as well but for us it was too much weight in our backpacks. How this could have happened after all the advice and planning is inconceivable but there it is. And....a lot of good all this stuff has done us. John cut his hand slicing an apple and, despite the fact that we have 4 kg. of first aid supplies, antiseptic wipes, bandaids, polysporin and whatnot, we were all too lazy to take off our packs and dig for them so John just licked the blood off his hand, wrapped it in kleenex and we carried on. Highly hygenic!

Orisson to Roncevalles was in a blizzard. Unbelievable. It was cold, dangerous and scary. I´m sure I was one shiver away from hypothermia by the time I got to Roncesvalles. I had mistakenly followed the front runners and John down a steep, snow covered descent and, as I slid and slipped and tried desperately to brace myself from catapulting headfirst or somersaulting down the hill, I totally ripped out my quads. Turns out saner, safer decisions were made by the slower group and they went down the road way. The payment for my folly is that my quads and now my knees are destroyed.

The next day every step was painful and I was ready to give it up a couple of times but I talked myself into pulling up my ´big girl underpants´and toughing it out.

So Day One was rain, Day Two a blizzard and Day Three, today, was a mud bath. Can´t wait for tomorrow.

Communal living is also already starting to wear thin with. At Larrasoana we were amongst the first 15 to register for the Alberque and so we each got a bed in a room that sleeps 14. It is in a really, really small room. And the bathrooms and showers are co-ed! I have seen more men´s briefs in the last two days than I need to ever in a lifetime. Apparently, there´s only toilet paper for the first 12 people.

However, I am not ready to change my return flight. Whether that is being strong or stupid is yet to be decided.

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